Sunday, April 10, 2016

Staged to Sell: Minor Changes to a Magnificent Kitchen

One draw back to our house was the kitchen.  It was a super swanky kitchen for the 1970s, and looks like I probably got a facelift sometime in the 1990s but on a whole it isn't generally what buyers are going to be looking for right now.  When that happens you have to play up your strengths, and make your weak areas fall to the background. 

So first things first...

This is a picture from our homes listing when we bought it.  I was super excited when I saw this because of the double ovens, a large pantry, and brick floors.  The things I wasn't as excited about was the mauve counters, and finding out that the bottom oven didn't work.

So we didn't opt to try to have them fix the oven, but after I moved in I called the appliance repair guy only for him to tell me that they don't make parts to fix my oven.  New double ovens are super pricey.  So I turned to the internet to diagnose and/or find refurbished parts for my oven.  I found out that the code sign that flashed was because the motherboard was going bad, and needed to be replaced.  I also found a company ( that fixes motherboards for discontinued ovens.  So for $200 our ovens were once again fully functional.  Which was a way better price than the thousands we would have been looking at otherwise, and the ovens aren't so dated that they look awful.  That match the space, and now they work great.

Fix janky oven, check!  The next item on the chopping block was the trash compactor.

The classiest feature of this thing was the massive dent in the front, and the fact that it too wasn't functional.  Add to it that I really don't like trash compactors, and this think was not going to go through any kind of a overhaul.  It was just going to be hauled right up out of my kitchen.

Which left behind a perfect trashcan sized hole, but the inside of the leftover cubby wasn't finished.  See the nails poking up along that one side, and how the edges were worn and gross looking?

Then there was this!  When the dreamy brick was added they didn't bother to address the back two inches of the trash compactor cubby.  Which I find super uncool.

So I had some bead board wallpaper left over, and I applied it to one side.  It was paintable so I was able to paint it to match the cupboards.

Then to address the missing floor I had Señor Hotness make a false floor with a few planks of high quality maple flooring that I bought at a thrift shop.  It wasn't enough to actually floor a room so it was a perfect use of it.  We used 1 x 2's to create raised foundation for the planks to rest on, and I simply laid the planks in and trimmed them out.  Then we bought some angle trim to trim out the scuffed opening, and to finish off the floor edge.  And...

Bam!  Not looking bad, huh?  The maple flooring looks super awesome there.

If we were staying I would have had Señor Hotness add a shelf to the top of the cubby for cutting boards or something. This however gives a buttoned up, finished look to this cubby like it was always meant to be this awesome looking.

Then I added a bit of trim around the dishwasher area to give it a little more of a finished look.

All the trim was adhered using liquid nails. because I was finishing these areas up while Señor Hotness was on the road.

Which brings me to another point.  CLEAN UP YOUR CRAP!  I found a lot of stuff like this.  Honestly standing up, and working around in the kitchen this isn't really apparent.  When listing your home for sale you want to make sure that everything is spotless.

Have you ever heard that ugly people need to have a great personality because they can't afford to alienate people with an off putting personality too.  Well a dated kitchen can't afford to being messy.  Its already dated the last thing it needs is clutter turning people off to the space even more.

When I started scrubbing the kitchen cabinet I realized that lots of areas that I thought were bits of food were actually chipped paint.  When we bought the house the cabinets were already painted.  So I took one of the cabinet doors off, and had it color matched at the store.  This was awesome because paint fades over time, and I was able to match the exact tone of the current cabinet color.  Meaning that I could get away with spot painting the chips, and not having to paint all of the cupboards just because of a few chips.

My last bit of advice is to dress a space for its intended purpose.  For example we never used the breakfast nook as a breakfast nook, but when selling a house people may not be room changing weirdos like us so I needed to make a change.  Bonus points if you recognize this table from a previous blog post.  So they may be expecting a breakfast nook to be...a breakfast nook.

These are the official listing photos that were taken by our awesome neighbor and local photographer Kevin Beasley.  What do you think?

Not looking bad, right?  The things that I couldn't change were the counter-tops, but by making sure everything was super clean and had a finished look to it that doesn't seem quite so heinous anymore.  Now you are able to truly see the bonuses of the space.

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